There is no detrimental change because of the Covid-19 to current funding from SAAS.
Students not currently in receipt of SAAS needed to apply by 30 March 2020 to receive funding for the 2019/2020 academic year. However, SAAS will look at individual circumstances when deciding if they can award/increase funding this academic year.
The main changes to this year’s funding that have been announced are:
- - Eligible Care experienced students can claim their accommodation grant early, from the start of April 2020.
- - They have suspended recovery of any new overpayments for 3 months (where you are overpaid due to withdrawal, interruption or if parental income on your assessment is higher than stated on the initial application). Student who are already making det repayments can speak to SAAS if they are struggling to meet them.
- - They are looking at the whether there will be an extension to funding for students whose academic year will be extended due to a change in course timetable, nothing has been confirmed as yet.
If you are funded by SAAS and have questions about how Coronavirus affects your funding, Student Awards Agency Scotland are updating these FAQs daily.
SAAS Funding for 2020/2021
You should apply for funding via your SAAS portal as normal. If you don’t know what you will be studying next year, apply as if you were progressing on your current qualification - this can be amended later. You will need to apply by 01 June 2020 to expect payment in time for the new academic year, if you haven’t applied by this date, apply as soon as you can.
If the amount of loan or bursary you receive is means tested on your parental/sponsor/partner income and their income is expected to drop in the tax year 2020/2021 compared to tax year 2018/2019 then you may be able to ask for your SAAS payments to be re-assessed on the income for this tax year. You will need to submit an enquiry via your SAAS portal or call them to ask for a 2020/2021 income assessment form.
If you are declaring your own income, such as employment or universal credit and are unsure how to complete the form please feel free to contact SAAS or an adviser at the Advice Place for help.
If you are returning to repeat credits because of an interruption or assessment results, you may still be considered be able for full time funding. You can find more on our website, but please do contact us if you would like information specific to your situation.
Medical, Nursing and Midwifery Students funded by SAAS
Medical and Nursing and midwifery student support payments will not be affected if they undertake a clinical placement employment.
The Scottish Government has issued specific advice to Nursing and Midwifery students in Scotland who have volunteered to work in clinical practice, including renumeration here.
Student Finance for undergraduate students
Student finance haven’t issued any changes to their funding processes as a result of Covid-19 but you can find Covid-19 updates and their contact details here.
Funding for 2020/2021
Even if you aren’t sure what you will be studying in 2020/2021 you should still submit your funding application via your Student Finance Portal as if you were progressing on your current qualification. If you are applying for student finance for the first time you need to apply by 22 May 2020 to ensure you are paid on time for the start of your course, or by 07 June 2020 if you have received Student Finance last year. If you have missed this date you can still apply, but your funding may not be ready in time for the start of your course.
You won’t need to post evidence at this stage, they’ll be able to process without it and ask for it to be submitted later.
If the amount of maintenance loan or grant you receive is means tested on your parental/sponsor income and their income is expected to drop by more than 15% in the tax year 2020/2021 compared to tax year 2018/2019 then you may be able to ask for your student finance to be re-assessed on the income for this tax year. You will need to telephone Student Finance to discuss this.
If you are returning to repeat credits because of an interruption or assessment results, you may still be considered be able for full time funding. You can find more on our website,but please do contact us if you would like information specific to your situation.
Postgraduate Taught Students
There are no changes to Postgraduate funding from UK funding bodies that we are aware of, and you find general information on Postgraduate Funding on our website.
If you are struggling due to a change in your funding or having to extend your studies please do contact us for individual advice.
Postgraduate Doctoral Funding
There is little UK Government Funding for Doctoral students, of those who receive funding most will come from a Research Council.
Research councils are looking at how they may support students because of Covid-19 and we’ll update this page with more information as it is announced. For those in receipt of funding from a research council, it is expected they will look at your circumstances individually to see if funding can be extended. An e-mail was sent to students on 31 March 2020 outlining this, which you can view here.
If you are in financial difficulty please do contact us for advice.